Single-use instruments, cutting blocks, and trials increase efficiency in the operating room during total knee arthroplasty: a prospective comparison of navigated and non-navigated cases

J Arthroplasty. 2013 Aug;28(7):1135-40. doi: 10.1016/j.arth.2013.02.020. Epub 2013 May 28.


The purpose of this prospective controlled trial was to determine if efficiency increases could be achieved in non-navigated and navigated total knee arthroplasties by replacing traditional saws, cutting blocks, and trials with specialized saws and single-use cutting blocks and trials. Various timing metrics during total knee arthroplasty, including operating room preparation times and specific intra-operative times, were measured in 400 procedures performed by eight different surgeons at 6 institutions. Efficiency increases were the result of statistically significant reductions in combined instrument setup and cleanup times as well as in adjusted surgical episode times in navigated total knee arthroplasties. Single-use instruments show promising benefits, but adequate patient follow-up is needed to confirm safety and efficacy before they can be widely adopted. Nevertheless, the authors believe that the use of single-use instruments, cutting guides, and trial implants for total knee arthroplasty will play an increasing role in improving operating room efficiency.

Keywords: cutting block; efficiency; instruments; single-use; time saving; total knee arthroplasty; trial.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Controlled Clinical Trial
  • Multicenter Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Arthroplasty, Replacement, Knee / instrumentation*
  • Efficiency*
  • Equipment Design
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Operating Rooms / organization & administration*
  • Operative Time
  • Prospective Studies
  • Surgery, Computer-Assisted / methods*
  • Treatment Outcome